Explained: Why farmers continue to oppose the Centre’s proposal to end the stalemate

Written by Anju Agnihotri Chaba | Jalandhar |

16 December 2020 08:53:00

Protest in New Delhi on Tuesday at Singhu border, where farmers protest against agricultural laws. (Photo Express: Abhinav Saha)

Farmers’ unions wasted no time in rejecting the amendments proposed by the Union government to the current agricultural laws. BKU (Dakuanda) Secretary General Jagmohan Singh Patiala explains point by point why farmers oppose the Centre’s offer.

Center proposal: State governments can impose taxes / assignments on private mandates

Farmers’ objection: “The creation of private mandates together with the state committees for the agricultural market (APMC) will push all farms towards private markets. The result will be the end of government markets and brokerage systems (commissioning), as well as APMC systems. After that, only the large traders and large companies will operate in the markets and procure agricultural products at ancillary prices. The government has proposed that there will be a uniform policy of taxes, fees and transfers for both the government and private markets. But governments would deliberately delay procurement as in the case of paddy fields and make public markets inefficient and redundant. “

Center proposal: Government written guarantee for continuation of existing MSP system

Farmers’ objection: “We are not only apprehensive, but fully convinced that the new agricultural laws are led to dismantle the APMCs. Therefore, we ask that the Union government enforce a comprehensive law on MSP for the whole country and for all crops. But the government is dragging its feet to bring legislation on this issue and only speaks for a written guarantee, which is not a legal document and has no guarantee. That’s why the farmers rejected the government’s written insurance proposal and insisted on repealing these anti-farmer laws. “

Center proposal: State governments can register traders to regulate them

Farmers’ objection: “Current agricultural laws do not include provisions to regulate traders. These laws allow any PAN cardholder to purchase grain from the markets at illicit prices and to engage in hoarding. Instead of registering to regulate traders, Central is trying to pass the dollar to state governments to regulate traders. Therefore, the Center is not ready to take any responsibility on this issue. This is also being proposed under the pressure of farmers’ organizations “.

Center proposal: Under the Contract Agriculture Act, farmers will have the option to go to court and their land will be safe as no loans will be granted on farmers’ land and buildings by mortgage.

Farmers’ objection: “Farms are concerned about the grabbing of farmers’ land by large corporations under contract farming. The EU government has presented a proposal to allay farmers’ fears by stating that there will be no sale, lease and transfer of land during the contract period. But the history of contract farming has many examples of non-payment by companies that excuse various such as shoddy products. This has happened in the case of sugar cane where payments have been suspended for many years or in cases of non-procurement with poor quality excuses. He pushed farmers into a debt trap. In these cases the farmers are unable to repay the loans and have no choice but to sell / lose their land. Contract farming has resulted in the displacement and destruction of farmers around the world. Even in the United States, where huge subsidies are granted to the agricultural sector, farmers are forced to commit suicide. ” 📣 Follow Express Explained on Telegram

Center proposal: Power Bill 2020 is just a draft open for discussion

Farmers’ objection: “The Union government wants to control the electricity sector by removing it from the jurisdiction of the states. He wants to suspend subsidies to farmers. The WTO has repeatedly instructed the Indian government to suspend subsidies. Therefore the Modi government wants to bring the electricity sector under central control. Farmers are opposed to this move. The government proposes to exclude subsidies from this bill and says the feed subsidy will be passed on to farmers in cash, which is practically not possible when there is a majority of small and marginal farmers who cannot pay their bills first. and then take advantage of the subsidy. “

Center proposal: Willing to amend the NCR Pollution Control Act

Farmers’ objection: “The Union government believes that the burning of paddy stubble is responsible for the pollution in Delhi and so they have enacted legislation of severe punishment and heavy fines of up to Rs 1 crore for alleged offenders. Now, under pressure from farmers’ organizations, the government is proposing amendments. This law is only to harass the poor and small farmers.

The proposed amendments have nothing to offer and farmers’ organizations are determined to continue the united struggle until these laws are repealed. “

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